Porsche Plugs Panamera Turbo SE Hybrid At New York Preview

The Porsche 918 Hybrid was the most powerful production car ever made by the company. This week at the New York Auto Show, the second most powerful production Porsche ever was front and center on the dais — the Panamera Turbo SE Hybrid. This über sedan from the Stuttgart automaker takes the same twin turbo V-8 550 horsepower engine featured in the Panamera Turbo S and mates it to a 136 horsepower electric motor for a total of 686 horses straining to be unleashed.

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When the driver stomps the go pedal, things happen in a hurry. The factory quotes a 0–60 time of 3.2 seconds for the 5,200 lb sedan. Ceramic brakes, torque vectoring, and active suspension management all are standard, of course. Power is apportioned to all 4 wheels via an eight-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission. A 14.1 kWh lithium-ion battery provides an estimated electric-only driving range of 31 miles (NEDC). Porsche says it can be charged in 6 hours using the standard 3.6 kilowatt onboard charger or in fewer than 3 hours using an optional 7.2 kW unit connected to a 240 volt outlet.

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The 2018 Panamera Turbo S E-Hybrid is expected to reach US dealers by the end of 2017. It will also be offered in a stretched Executive edition with a 5.9-inch longer wheelbase. The base suggested retail price for the 2018 Panamera Turbo S E-Hybrid will be $184,400, while the Panamera Turbo S E-Hybrid Executive will start at $194,800. These prices exclude the $1,050 delivery, processing, and handling fee.

The Panamera Turbo SE Hybrid may pay tribute to the Porsche 918 Hybrid, but a sports car it is not. Its weight is hundreds of pounds more than the combined weight of a 1963 356B 1600 and a 1965 911. You won’t see one of these at your next track day event. It is also hard to imagine the car has much green cred even though it is a plug-in hybrid. Everything about the car shouts “Excessive!” Porsche should be embarrassed that a car this expensive only comes with a wimpy 3.6 kW charger as standard equipment.

The Panamera Turbo SE Hybrid is little more than a bauble for 1%ers. It may assuage some guilty consciences while it is parked in the family four-car garage next to the Ferrari, the Mercedes, and the Bentley, but it is irrelevant to any rational conversation about sustainability. But hey, if you’ve got it, flaunt it. Just don’t start weeping crocodile tears when the price of gas cracks $3 a gallon.

Source: Car and Driver

Steve Hanley

Closely following the transition from internal combustion to electricity. Whether it's cars, trucks, ships, or airplanes, sustainability is the key. Please follow me on Google + and Twitter.